Right now in the United States brand of New Japan Pro Wrestling, they are gearing up for their edition of the New Japan Cup. Eight men have fought to gain entry into the tournament, but they didn’t know what the prize would be last year. Last time around it was a shot at IWGP United States Champion Jon Moxley, and KENTA was the eventual winner. This year, the winner doesn’t get a title shot. They instead will become the first ever NJPW Strong Openweight Champion.
Looking At The Field For The 2021 USA New Japan Cup
This means that Brody King, Chris Dickinson, Clark Connors, Fred Rosser, Hikuleo, Lio Rush, Ren Narita, & Tom Lawlor will battle it out to become the first man to hold this championship. It’s a great field for an openweight field, with standouts like Lio Rush, Brody King, Tom Lawlor and Chris Dickinson really standing out.
The first round matches start next week, with Lio Rush vs. Clark Connors, Tom Lawlor vs. Ren Narita, Fred Rosser vs. Hikuleo, & Chris Dickinson vs. Brody King all happening on the April 9th episode. Any of these men could win, and a championship is a great incentive to win.
Is This Belt Really Needed By New Japan Pro Wrestling?
This announcement of yet another singles title in NJPW was met with some pushback from fans however, as they feel NJPW already has too many belts. Despite just merging the IWGP Heavyweight & IWGP Intercontinental Championships into the new IWGP World Heavyweight Championship, they still have four other singles belts.
Fans also feel that this belt doesn’t have a place with the IWGP United States Championship around. But if their expansion plans into the United States pick up after the pandemic clears? This Openweight title will be a secondary title for the New Japan Pro Wrestling of America expansion. As noted by NJPW1972.com “The title represents the pinnacle of competition on NJPW STRONG on Friday nights, and will be contested for by wrestlers of any weight class.” This differs from the US Championship, which is heavyweight exclusive.
The belt has a gorgeous design, arguably nicer than the current NEVER Openweight Championship and even the new IWGP World Heavyweight Championship, and we will have a worthy first champion. Who do you think will hold this new belt first? Let us know what you think in the comment section down below.
SUBSCRIBE NOW: Get TheOvertimer’s Hottest Stories, Breaking News and Special Features in your email, CLICK HERE!